Government Faces Intensifying Debate Over UK Immigration Policies

By 30th November 2023 No Comments

Alleged Agreement on Migration Measures Sparks Controversy within Conservative Party


In an article written by The Guardian, reports surfaced about a verbal agreement between Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and former Home Secretary Suella Braverman, outlining measures to reduce migration to the UK. Although Downing Street denies the existence of a formal plan, speculation is growing amid hints from Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch about potential increases to the minimum salary threshold.

Braverman, recently dismissed by Sunak, has threatened to reveal documents indicating Sunak’s commitment to migration policies before she endorsed him as the prime minister. The reported agreement, as detailed by The Daily Telegraph, proposed raising the minimum salary for skilled workers entering the UK from £26,000 to £40,000. Additionally, other measures included discontinuing extended visas for graduates, restricting family members’ entry, and prioritizing specific universities for student visas.

However, while the newspaper did not provide a copy of the agreement, it claimed Sunak verbally assented to the demands in the presence of witnesses. Downing Street maintains that the discussions did not constitute a formal deal and refutes claims of Sunak endorsing specific policies.

Despite the absence of a written agreement, Braverman’s latest revelations contribute to internal Conservative pressure on Sunak, particularly following record-breaking net migration statistics released last week, totalling 745,000 in the year to December 2022. Downing Street is reportedly working on strategies to reduce these figures, considering limitations on dependants and a potential increase in the salary threshold.

UK Parliament Building in Westminster London

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and former Home Secretary Suella Braverman, allegedly have outlined measures to reduce migration to the UK.


What does this mean for UK Immigration?


The debate around migration policies intensifies as Sunak faces pressure from MPs on the right of his party. However, the government is cognizant of the contributions of foreign workers, particularly in the NHS and care homes. Balancing the need for stricter migration controls with the potential impact on key sectors poses a significant challenge for policymakers.

Moreover, Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch, commenting on the migration statistics, suggested that revised plans, possibly involving changes to the salary threshold, would be presented by Home Secretary James Cleverly soon. Badenoch emphasized the necessity of strong measures to bring migration numbers down to a sustainable level.

Moreover, areas like the Skilled Worker, Health and Care Worker, High Potential Individual (HPI), and Global Talent Visas have the potential to be affected by an increase to the salary threshold.


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